BAR HARBOR — Shoppers on Mount Desert Island have an opportunity to skip the bloated post-Thanksgiving hustle and bustle of Black Friday. They can put off some of their shopping and join Midnight Madness here on Dec. 1.
The event begins at 4:30 p.m. at the Village Green, where Christmas carolers will sing. At 5 p.m., Santa Claus will stop by. He’ll head to the YMCA, where he’ll listen to children’s wish lists and be available for photos.
Also at the YMCA, youngsters can enjoy craft activities and pick out a free book as part of the Islander’s Gift of Reading program.
The sales, 20 to 70 percent discounts, begin at 8 p.m. at many downtown businesses.
“It’s a fun community event and a great way to usher in the holiday season,” Julie Veilleux, co-owner of Window Panes, said. “We always have people who are shopping right up until midnight.”
The event has been held annually since 2001.
“It’s become a tradition,” said Alf Anderson, director of membership sales and marketing at the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce. “It gives people a chance to shop at a time that isn’t usually reserved for shopping.”
There will be a raffle at the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center to win two round-trip tickets from Bar Harbor to Boston via Cape Air. To enter, take receipts from transactions during the sale. The voucher is redeemable for a year.
“[Cape Air] has always been supportive of us,” Anderson said. “It encourages people to do their shopping, and they might even win a trip to Boston.”
For a list of participating business, visit the chamber of commerce’s website.